|Publication number||US5089007 A|
|Application number||US 07/479,567|
|Publication date||Feb 18, 1992|
|Filing date||Feb 14, 1990|
|Priority date||Feb 14, 1990|
|Also published as||DE69114481D1, DE69114481T2, DE69130023D1, DE69130023T2, EP0515545A1, EP0515545A4, EP0515545B1, EP0656193A2, EP0656193A3, EP0656193B1, WO1991011964A1|
|Publication number||07479567, 479567, US 5089007 A, US 5089007A, US-A-5089007, US5089007 A, US5089007A|
|Inventors||Wolff M. Kirsch, Yong H. Zhu, Robert B. Cushman|
|Original Assignee||The University Of New Mexico|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (11), Referenced by (14), Classifications (9), Legal Events (5)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This invention relates generally to the field of surgery and more particularly to a hand tool capable of performing cutting, clamping, or shearing functions in surgical operations.
In surgery, there is a frequent need to cut, clamp or shear tissues and other materials of small size. A variety of tools have been developed to perform such functions. Prior devices, however, tend to be unnecessarily complex and thus relatively expensive and difficult to clean properly.
Forceps and tweezers typically have a pair of handles interconnected by a pivot or flexible connection at a point along their length, so that squeezing the handles together produces relative jaw movement. The handles usually are substantially rigid, as in U.S. Pat. No. 4,693,246; however, thin-section handles designed to flex when pressure is applied, in order to move the jaws, have been proposed also, as in U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,212,305, No. 3.805.792. No. 1.615.125, No. 3,827,277 and No. 2,774.438.
The jaws of tweezers or forceps are usually integral extensions of the handles; however, some prior devices have separate jaws which are closed by withdrawing the jaws or a jaw assembly into a tube or the like. Examples of such devices are found in U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,592,347 and 4,394,864, and in U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,827,277 and 3,774,438, above. The latter two patents are made of plastic, so that they can be thrown away after use.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a tool of simple manufacture.
A further object of the invention is to provide a lightweight tool capable of performing cutting, clamping or shearing functions, depending upon the shape of the jaws.
Another object is to enable a surgeon to cut, clamp or shear material simply by squeezing the sides of the tool together.
It is also an object of the invention to provide a tool which can be easily disassembled, cleaned and reassembled.
One further object is to assist a surgeon in regulating the degree of closure of jaws of such a tool by providing tactile feedback in the form of increasing resistance to the hand as a function of jaw closure.
The invention is embodied in a tool intended particularly for surgery, comprising a body portion including a pair of flexible leaves joined at their forward ends by a bridge having an aperture therein, and joined face-to-face at their rearward ends. An elongated collet extending perpendicularly between the leaves of the body is retained between the leaves at its rearward end. The leaves, normally bowed outward from one another, can be squeezed toward one another, so as to lengthen the body and produce relative movement between the bridge and the forward end of the collet. A pair of tines at the forward end of the collet have inwardly facing working edges or jaws and outwardly facing oblique cam surfaces which interact with opposite sides of the aperture, to close the jaws, when the bridge portion of the body is driven toward the jaws by squeezing the leaves.
In the accompanying drawings,
FIGS. 1 and 2 are front views showing open and closed positions of a multipurpose surgical tool embodying the invention;
FIG. 3 is top view of the tool shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a detail view of a blank from which the body of the tool is formed;
FIG. 5 is a detail view of jawed collet shown in FIG. 1; and
FIG. 6 is a detail showing the jaws and distal end of the tool body in detail.
A surgical tool embodying the invention, shown in FIGS. 1-3, comprises only two parts--a body portion 10 and a collet 40, both constructed from a resilient sheet metal such as stainless steel. The gauge of the material is chosen so as to provide sufficient flexibility that plastic deformation of the tool does not occur in normal use (hence the term "resiliently flexible" hereafter), and to provide the desired spring rate, according to the intended use of the tool.
The body portion 10 includes a pair of identical leaves 12, 14 extending from opposite sides of a bight or bridge 16 defined by folding the blank on lines 18, 20. The bridge has a preformed aperture 22 at its center (see the body layout or blank, before folding, in FIG. 4). The aperture is symmetrical about the center plane P of the tool, and has the form of an elongated slot with widened portions 24 at the center plane.
After the folds 18, 20 are made, the tabs 26, 28 at the ends of the blank are drawn together--the resilience of the leaves resulting in an outwardly bowed configuration as shown--and are welded or otherwise joined together to form a handle 30. The handle end of the tool is referred to as the "rearward" end of the tool hereafter. Aligned holes 32, 34 extend through the leaves near the tab juncture 36.
The collet 40, shown in detail in FIG. 5, comprises an elongate bar 42 which is bifurcated at both ends to form resiliently flexible forward tines 44, 46 and rearward tines 58, 60. Each of the forward tines has a jaw 48 at the distal end thereof. Each jaw (FIG. 6) has an inner working face or edge 50 and an outer edge, a portion of which obliquely angled so as to define a cam surface 52. The cam surfaces are preferably planar, and if extended would meet at the center plane of the tools, subtending an acute angle alpha as shown.
The tines 44, 46 are resiliently flexible, so that the jaws can be deflected inwardly to the point where their working edges 50 meet (FIG. 2), and then return to their original open position when released (FIG. 1). Preferably, the tines, jaws and aperture are designed so that the tines are slightly flexed even in the relaxed position of the tool, whereby the cam surfaces are always in contact with the sides of the aperture.
The collet 40 is permanently retained between the leaves of the body by tabs 54, 56 which extend outward from the ends of rearward tines 58, 60. In the assembled position, the tines 58, 60 are deflected inward from their free position, so as to maintain a constant outward bias on the tabs 54, 56, and thus eliminate any free motion of the collet. It is apparent that the collet is aligned, by the aperture and by the holes 32, 34, so that a plane containing the four tines is perpendicular to and bisects each of the leaves. That is, the width of the collet is perpendicular to the leaves.
The arrangement of tabs 54, 56, tines 58, 60 and holes 32, 34 is preferred because it provides for easy tool assembly and disassembly. However, the rearward end of the collet may be affixed between the leaves 12, 14, by other means, as long as such means perform the function of preventing substantial relative movement between the rearward ends of the parts.
In use, with the jaws astride a workpiece or tissue, the leaves are squeezed together, changing their free, bowed configuration (FIG. 1) to a more linear configuration (FIG. 2). The straightening of the leaves lengthens the body slightly. Since the body and collet are interconnected at their rearward ends, the effect of this lengthening is to withdraw the jaws into the aperture, or actually, to displace the bridge portion of the body forward with respect to the jaws. As this occurs, interaction between the oblique cam surfaces and the sides of the aperture forces the jaws toward one another, against both the spring bias provided by the tines and any resistance of work material between the jaws. When inward pressure on the leaves is removed, their resilience restores the body to its original length, and the jaws, no longer constrained by the sides of the aperture, spring back to their original position.
Because both of the tool components can be stamped from sheet metal, their manufacture is very straightforward and inexpensive; in addition, it is a simple matter to snap the two parts of the tool together. The tool is easily and thoroughly cleaned and sterilized, having no pivot points or recesses to harbor contaminants.
While the foregoing describes use of the tool in the field of surgery, the tool may find appropriate uses in other applications requiring a small, simple jawed tool.
Inasmuch as the invention is subject to numerous variations and changes in detail, the foregoing description, and the accompanying drawings, should be understood as merely illustrative of the invention defined by the following claims.
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|U.S. Classification||606/205, 606/210, 294/99.2|
|International Classification||A61B17/32, A61B17/30|
|Cooperative Classification||A61B17/32, A61B17/30|
|European Classification||A61B17/32, A61B17/30|
|Dec 6, 1991||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: UNIVERSITY OF NEW MEXICO
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:KIRSCH, WOLFF M.;REEL/FRAME:005947/0354
Effective date: 19910221
|Mar 13, 1992||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: SPINNAKER R & D ASSOCIATES, COLORADO
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:CUSHMAN, ROBERT B.;REEL/FRAME:006040/0420
Effective date: 19920129
|Aug 3, 1995||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Aug 17, 1999||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8
|Aug 18, 2003||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 12